View photos of Vikings TE Chris Herndon who recently joined the team.
EAGAN, Minn. — The Vikings bolstered their depth at tight end by trading a 2022 fourth-round draft pick to the New York Jets to acquire Chris Herndon.
Here are five things to know about Herndon, who is listed at 6-foot-4 and 253 pounds.
1. Bounced back
Herndon recorded 31 receptions for 287 yards (9.3 yards per catch) and three scores in 2020 when he started 13 of 16 games for the Jets. Seventeen of his catches (on 45 targets) gained first downs, and he generated a rating of 108.3 for Jets quarterbacks last season.
Those numbers followed a 2019 season in which Herndon missed all but one game. He had opened his second season with a suspension and didn't play until November. An injury ended his season.
2. Impressive pro debut
A fourth-round pick (107th overall) in 2018, Herndon made a splash in his rookie season when he started 12 games and played in all 16. He recorded 39 receptions for 502 yards (12.9 yards per catch) and four touchdowns, ranking among the top five among all-time Jets rookies in each category.
The four receiving scores are the most ever by a Jets rookie tight end, and one occurred against the Vikings on Oct. 21, 2018. The 12-yarder tied the game at seven before the Vikings pulled away for a 37-17 win. He totaled 42 yards on four catches in his lone game against Minnesota.
Herndon also was selected by the Jets equipment staff as the 2018 Bill Hampton Award winner. The recognition is bestowed annually to the rookie who "acts like a pro in the locker room — friendly, courteous and neat."
3. College progression
Herndon appeared in just three games and didn't record any stats as a freshman with the Miami Hurricanes.
He blossomed each season thereafter, however, catching 18 passes for 237 yards and a score in 2015.
Herndon followed with 28 receptions for 334 yards and two touchdowns in 2016 before closing with 40 catches for 477 yards and four touchdowns to earn placement on the All-ACC Second Team in 2017.
4. Out on top
Herndon opted for Miami instead of accepting an offer from Auburn or Mississippi State.
He converted to tight end after playing receiver in high school. Herndon earned Third-Team All-County as a receiver from the Gwinnett Daily Post after catching 33 passes for 543 yards and six touchdowns as a senior when he helped Norcross High School win the 2013 Georgia Class 6A State Championship.
Herndon is the fourth player on the Vikings current roster from Georgia, but the only one who plays offense. The other three players are DT Dalvin Tomlinson and DEs Stephen Weatherly and D.J. Wonnum.
5. Postaxial Polydactyly
According to the Jets 2021 media guide, Herndon was born with a genetic condition known as postaxial polydactyly, resulting in an extra pinky finger on each hand. Herndon underwent surgery as an infant to remove the extra digits.